A quick and selective analytical method was developed via LC–MS/MS for the simultaneous quantitation of alternariol (AOH), alternariol monomethyl ether (AME) and tenuazonic acid (TeA) which belong to the large group of secondary metabolites produced by fungi of the genus Alternaria. Cocoa is susceptible to a number of toxin-producing microorganisms, including Aspergillus and Penicillium species. The method relies on a single-step extraction, followed by an easy clean up, dilution of the raw extract and direct analysis. To assess whether cocoa and chocolate products can be a source of Alternaria toxins, a monitoring of cocoa and chocolate products (N = 99) as well as cocoa raw and semi-finished materials (cocoa shells, cocoa masses; N = 10) was performed. As the results, cocoa and products made from cocoa (without other ingredients) are no source of the Alternaria toxins considered here.
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Schultz, J., Umberath, K.M., Raters, M. et al. About Alternaria toxins in cocoa and chocolate products—method development and monitoring of alternariol, alternariol monomethyl ether and tenuazonic acid. Mycotoxin Res 38, 167–173 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12550-022-00457-z
- Alternaria toxins